The Washington Post reported, “One trend is obvious, observers say: beauty brands are pivoting toward more gender-neutral products presented in unisex packaging.” Inc. magazine also said that gender-neutral products are a growing segment in the cosmetics industry.
This of course has not always been the case. Despite changing trends in personal care, brands have traditionally embraced gender-specific packaging and promotion – a tried and true approach for generations. Picture retail shelves stocked with black and grey shampoo options for men versus purple and pink shampoo bottles for women, or deep woods-scented deodorant sprays vs. floral-scented offerings.
As gender roles and expectations have blurred, an increasing number of consumers are rejecting these stereotypes – presenting a major opportunity for diversification of men’s care and gender-neutral personal care products including:
- Shaving creams
- Fine fragrances
- Deodorants / anti-perspirants
- Hair care products
- Body sprays
- Shower foams
Product Development for Hair Care, Skin Care, Facial Care and Over the Counter Products
As a contract manufacturing partner with a deep history developing aerosol and liquid solutions, the PLZ Personal Care network offers unique insight into the needs of this expanding market. When developing or reformulating products to be more gender neutral, brand owners must consider a number of variables. A qualified contract manufacturing partner works with brand owners to identify the scope of the project, and develop formulation and filling processes. Formulation and product development experts also advise on factors such as the level and type of ingredients, and delivery aspects of the finished products.
For example, if a brand owner is looking to create several different fragrance options that can be used across a range of product offerings, we work hand-in-hand with them on overall product design. Our formulation experts ensure that the products emit the same scent across all categories, and that product packaging is compatible with the formulation and specified branding.
For brand owners looking to manufacture products without synthetic ingredients and/or improve an existing product to eliminate negative ingredients, we can also advise on ingredient choices and considerations for the development of non-toxic formulations. Solutions may include the substitution of aromatherapy botanicals as alternatives to synthetic fragrances, or vitamin and botanical enriched essential oils made with gluten-free ingredients to restore, protect and nourish hair of all types.
Packaging Considerations for Men’s Care and Gender-Neutral Products
In addition to addressing these formulation aspects, packaging plays a critical role in helping men’s care and gender-neutral products stand out on crowded retail shelves. It is important to consider the use of the product to determine the appropriate packaging and assembly needs. Factors such as the quality of the caps for protecting the product, appropriate actuator size to ensure that the product packaging works with the formulation, and the style, durability and color of the packaging are important components for success.
Liquid and Aerosol Men’s Care and Gender-Neutral Product Capabilities
Our men’s care and gender-neutral product capabilities include development of globally compliant formulas that can be used and marketed in the U.S. and overseas in custom and standard sizes. We offer unique powder aerosol formulations and filling capabilities for high-growth products such as makeup mousse foundations, dry shampoos, body powder sprays, as well as dual-function product solutions such as moisturizing body foam with SPF – in popular trial- and travel-sized products to full-size products. Specialized dimethyl ether (DME) filling capabilities are available for hair care and body spray products, and we’re certified as a filler for natural and organic formulations.
Visit the PLZ Personal Care webpage to learn how we go beyond the fill. From beard oils to texture putty to deodorants and more, PLZ Personal Care is the market-leading product developer, formulator and manufacturing partner that personal care brands rely on to bring the latest product innovations to life.